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"419" Scam – Advance Fee / Fake Lottery Scam

The so-called "419" scam is a type of fraud dominated by criminals from Nigeria and other countries in Africa. Victims of the scam are promised a large amount of money, such as a lottery prize, inheritance, money sitting in some bank account, etc.

Victims never receive this non-existent fortune but are tricked into sending their money to the criminals, who remain anonymous. They hide their real identity and location by using fake names and fake postal addresses as well as communicating via anonymous free email accounts and mobile phones.

Keep in mind that scammers DO NOT use their real names when defrauding people.
The criminals either abuse names of real people or companies or invent names or addresses.
Any real people or companies mentioned below have NO CONNECTION to the scammers!

Read more about such scams here or in our 419 FAQ. Use the Scam-O-Matic to verify suspect emails.

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Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:

Fraud email example:

From: "John Branson" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sun, 1 Oct 2017 22:02:39 -0400

24 Albert Embankment,
London SE1 7TJ,


My name is John Branson, I have Ten Million US Dollars (US$10,000,000) I want to invest and I need a serious partner to carry out this huge project. I am requesting for your co-operation to actualize this by inviting you to partner with me. If you are interested in this partnership, kindly let me know to enable us discuss further.

As soon as I receive your positive response, I will give you details, my full personal details and contacts, source of the fund and how we will carry out the business.


John Branson

Anti-fraud resources: